Before there was Hollywood…

There was Hollywood on the Hudson!

IMAGE: Thomas Edison’s Black Maria film studio, situated on a giant turntable.

New Jersey was a key player in the productions and inventions that drove early film, from Thomas Edison’s earliest film experiments to notable movies produced in the area known as Hollywood on the Hudson.

How much do you know about this illustrious era?
(take the quiz)

Which film featured the largest outdoor set ever built in Fort Lee, NJ?
A) Tale of Two Cities (1917)
B) Les Miserables (1918)
C) Cleopatra (1917)
D) True Blue (1918)

Why was Thomas Edison’s film studio, the Black Maria in West Orange, NJ, built on a giant turntable?
A) To allow for multiple productions to film at once
B) To easily rotate cameras
C) To allow trains to pass by
D) For natural sunlight

Which modern movie studio does NOT have ties to the New Jersey area?
A) Columbia Pictures
B) Universal Pictures
C) MGM Studios
D) 20th Century Studios (Fox)

What was featured in the first short film Thomas Edison made on the Kinetoscope in 1893?
A) A train
B) A ballet dancer
C) A sneeze
D) A bear

Which horror film was produced in the New Jersey area?
A) Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1913)
B) The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
C) Frankenstein (1931)
D) The Mummy (1932)

New Jersey is still making history today! After extensive filming in New Jersey in 2019 and 2020, “The Many Saints of Newark” premieres Friday, October 1st. We can’t wait to see this long-awaited feature film prequel to “The Sopranos,” an HBO series that made television history!

Answers: B, D, A, C, A.

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